Wanderlust is defined as a strong desire for or impulse to wander or travel and explore the world. Of course, it’s derivation is from German and is a combination of the word wondern (to hike) and lust (desire to). The German people have long had the cultural institution of hiking and understandably so with their native land’s beauty.

Here in America there seems to be a huge interest in adventure travel, even some that could justifiably be billed as expeditions. I recently stumbled across a few (and there are quite a few) cruise lines that specialize in travel and adventures to many locations difficult to access by your normal tourist.

Have a desire to see and actually have a range of adventures in Antarctica? Try National Geographic’s touring partner Lindblad Cruise Lines.

Want something even more physical try Austin-Lehman Adventure Vacations.

That’s just a few randomly picked outfits.

I’ve found over the years that my interest and desire to travel has increased. The wife and I are fortunate in that for many years we had the means to extensively travel, unfortunately it will be the work of a number of years (a lot actually..LOL) before we’ll be able to return to that lust for remote locations. Where does this lust come from? I know my biological father was a fanatic about travel and in spite of his extensive physical disabilities, he was able to find adventure. It’s perfectly OK for folks to be stay at home types and for a the last few years we’ve been in that category out of necessity, but that hasn’t diminished my desire to return to traveling.

I think man’s evolution is a direct result of his desire for adventure and especially risk-taking. This facet of our humanity let’s us be unafraid to try ‘new’ things that might be dangerous, yet immensely satisfying to say ‘we did it’. Travel across the Atlantic in ridiculous little wooden boats, sure we’re up for that and thousands followed. Settle Early America, sure we’ll do that too and migrate west for more. Take financial risk for a chance to make a profit, absolutely. Experiment with medical advances, we’ll do that too, and keep taking the risk. Investment risk in new technology, sign us up, we could be setting up another MicroSoft. Self-Government is perhaps one of the greatest risks we’ve taken as humans. For millenia we were content to live under dictators, tyrants, kings and queens all putatively smarter and better than the people at taking care and protecting their subjects, which worked out well for the kings, but not so much for the people. Why would we even try in a country that was barely on it’s feet? Why would we shed blood and treasure to even have a chance to take that chance of self-governance? We were up for the freedom that comes from self-governance. It’s all Wanderlust in different forms.

We can certainly have Wanderlust without leaving home, by any number of venues, such as blogging, gaming or social networking. But we need to address the outside world, get up and stir around a bit. A walkabout for lack of another term. But comes the recent era where many, many people became preoccupied with safety, hoping to find a longer life-span by eating and drinking certain things, while avoiding others. We became fixated on eliminating any and all danger in our lives and demanded the government, legislate these things, so stupid people would be forced to do the right thing. We wanted every conceivable danger banished by government edict. This idea is in direct conflict with our desire to ‘see the other side of the mountain’, I actually think that these ‘safety-peeps’ might have a mental illness. If our kids never scrape a knee, break an arm, get bonked by a baseball or any of those million and one kid injuries they will experience. We MUST learn things by experiencing physical pain (hopefully minor) in stretching our horizons.

That sense of wanderlust is still there, healthy and important to our humanity regardless our age or abilities.

For me personally, it’s of extreme importance. I’ve always loved the ocean, and aboard a ship at sea I find that serenity, so hard to locate on dry land, the extreme peace of watching the sun set on an ocean seemingly all your own. I think love of the ocean lies within most of us. Maybe the old saw about ‘saltwater in the blood’ has some truth to it. If we can’t get to the sea proper, we can always set sail on the Ocean Of Blacktop to satisfy that Wanderlust doing the ‘Road-Trip’ thing. I can remember from early age my dad’s enthusiasm for ‘Car Rides’, that great American past-time. Austin-Lehman in the above link, has a lot of domestics tours and adventures, for those unable or willing to travel the oceans ‘getting there’.

Look at this for example:


That civilians can actually go to and experience things like this, just intrigues my skivvies off. Yeah, I can feel the evening of life coming, but there are quite a few places I need to go yet and middle-aged or not, I’m gonna do them. That’s my mid-life crisis, how to afford and find the time to travel. It’s a challenge for damned sure, but well worth the effort.

How about you? Where does your Wanderlust want to take you? Forget money, time off, kiddie care for the moment and just think about it.

You need to get somewhere and see that “Green Flash” or the Southern Cross and a million other things of beauty in our world.

-Carry On

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